Choosing the right cloud platform for enterprise app development can be a business-critical decision. Different platforms offer different advantages in terms of cost, functionality, support, and security.
In this article, we break down and compare three leading cloud platforms — AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud.
While most enterprises still need some degree of on premise technology, an increasing number of enterprise applications are being built and deployed directly in the cloud. This allows development teams to stay product-focused, rather than having to work on the infrastructure to support the application.
By moving to the cloud, enterprises enjoy an existing physical infrastructure that is continuously maintained and updated, allowing them to dedicate more resources and time to software development projects.
Cloud Market Share: Leading Cloud Service Providers
- Amazon Web Services (AWS)
- Microsoft Azure
- Google Cloud Platform (GCP)
Today’s cloud infrastructure market is dominated by the “Big Three” cloud providers: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). Despite Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud’s growing market shares, AWS remains the clear leader; Canalys reports that AWS held 32.3% of the 2019 cloud infrastructure market, followed by Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud which held 16.9% and 5.8%, respectively.
Each platform has its own features and pricing that could match your mobile application development requirements. Keep reading to learn how each cloud service provider’s platform compares to the others.
Cloud Platform #1: Amazon Web Services (AWS)
The Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud platform offers almost every feature in the cloud computing industry. Their cloud services allow you to gain easy access to computing power, data storage, and other functionality necessary for app development.
AWS has a host of cloud-based products that fall under many categories. In addition to the features mentioned above, they offer a suite of management tools, developer tools, mobile services, and applications services—and that’s only the beginning. As you can imagine, the application services combined with cloud computing and database infrastructures are critical components to a successful enterprise mobile app development project.
The AWS pricing is very competitive with that of the other top cloud service providers, and has actually decreased over time due to competition and new pricing structures. AWS even offers a free tier for startups and individuals, an easy way to try before you buy!
AWS even offers per-second billing, allowing customers to pay for server uses by the second instead of by the hour. Depending on which services your team uses, you can certainly find a reasonable AWS price structure that is lower than the cost of an on-premise infrastructure investment.
Tools for Calculating AWS Pricing:
- AWS Pricing: General Overview
- AWS Free Tier
- AWS Monthly Pricing Calculator
- AWS Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Calculator
The Amazon Web Services cloud platform offers developers over 15 years of enterprise infrastructure experience. Since the admin teams at AWS continuously work to improve the platform, your development team can benefit from their collective experience.
When it comes to management capabilities and skills, AWS has some of the best talent in the market. Of course, you would want to choose a platform that has plenty of experience to build on.
Cloud Platform #2: Microsoft Azure
Much like Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure offers a full suite of cloud computing solutions fit for the needs of app developers.
The platform gives you the ability to deploy and manage virtual machines at scale. You can process and compute at whatever capacity you need within just minutes. If your custom software needs to run large-scale parallel batch computing, Azure can handle that too.
Azure’s comprehensive product and feature offerings integrate with your existing systems and processes, offering more power and capacity for enterprise development.
When considering the price of Microsoft Azure, you have to keep in mind that your costs will ultimately depend on which types of cloud products and solutions your development team needs.
The hourly cost of a server can range from $0.099 per hour to $0.149 per hour. If you’re just measuring costs by per instance, the prices might seem inconsistent. However, the prices are pretty comparable to AWS when you factor in the price per GB of RAM. As the main enterprise cloud service providers compete for your business, the prices remain competitive across the board.
Tools for Calculating Azure Pricing:
- Azure Pricing Overview
- Azure Free
- Azure Pricing Calculator
- Azure Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Calculator
In addition to the full set of features and customizable pricing tiers, the Azure cloud platform is one of the fastest solutions available. If you are looking for a solution that excels in speed of deployment, operation, or scalability, then you might want to choose the Azure platform. They are the leader in speed when it comes to cloud computing solutions.
Cloud Platform #3: Google Cloud Platform (GCP)
Google Cloud Platform Features
Much like the first two cloud providers, Google Cloud Platform has a myriad of solutions and products for developers. As an enterprise mobile app development team, you might be interested in App Engine, which allows app developers to build applications without dealing with the server. It’s a fully managed solution for Agile application development.
Furthermore, GCP offers a suite of computing, storage, networking, and database products. These are all great products to use depending on the type of app development you are working on.
Google Cloud Platform Pricing
Where GCP may fall behind in additional features, it makes up for in cost-efficient pricing models.
The cloud provider offers pay-as-you-go pricing, billing to the “per second” of usage. Setting GCP apart, it offers discounts for long-term use that start after the first month. This is great if you need to start a new mobile app development project and want to keep costs low.
By contrast, it could take over a year to get long-term discounts from the other cloud service providers. Clearly, Google Cloud is putting pressure on competing cloud providers to keep market prices lower.
Tools for Calculating Google Cloud Pricing:
Google Cloud Platform Advantages
As Google Cloud grows its share in the cloud infrastructure market, the platform offers another level of security. Since Google is no stranger to enterprise-level security, you can rely on their secure solutions.
They have over 500 employees that are dedicated to security protection. You will get data encryption, multiple layers of authentication, and third-party validations. For developers who need an extra buffer of security, Google Cloud might be the best platform and servicer provider for you.
Choosing a Cloud Platform for Your Business
When comparing AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud, there are many features, benefits, and costs to consider. Rather than trying to pick one solution, let your development needs choose a cloud services provider that fit your development needs.
This can be a single cloud provider, or you can combine services from two or three of these providers. Since the costs are relatively comparable, find the right mix of solutions to fit your enterprise development requirements.
Picking the right platform is just one small part of a successful cloud strategy. For an in-depth look at the top cloud challenges technology leaders are facing in 2020, we recommend our whitepaper — download it below.